Postbag: Don’t trumpet white elephant

YOU do not serve the people of Huntingdonshire well by joining their supine representatives in throwing in the towel and accepting the Government s offer of an already outrageously expensive white elephant, the guided bus, instead of a decent highway syst

YOU do not serve the people of Huntingdonshire well by joining their supine representatives in throwing in the towel and accepting the Government's offer of an already outrageously expensive white elephant, the guided bus, instead of a decent highway system.

The inspector's report indicates he failed to understand the real problem in the corridor from Cambridge to Huntingdon. This is the exceptional HGV loading on a major European link between Ireland and Bulgaria, with further intense loading between our major industrial areas and central Europe.

This cannot be handled by a dual two-lane road. D3 is essential to allow HGVs to sort themselves out without obstructing other traffic, particularly at peak times.

Acquaintance with other areas where proper provision has been made shows that his 20,000 passengers could be easily accommodated by a D3 road.

The modifications needed for the guided buses along the ring road will greatly aggravate the congestion and delays suffered by the many commuters from Godmanchester, the Offords and other outlying villages.

The scheme, which is manifestly a bee-in-the-bonnet of the Department of Transport, is being used by the department to distract attention from its disgraceful decision to spoil the agreed CHUMMS solution to save much less than the £100m being wasted on the buses and their route.

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LEWIS STRETCH, Laroc Close, Godmanchester

* ST IVES Lib Dems, like The Hunts Post, accept with good grace the Transport Secretary's decision that the guided bus is to go ahead.

If we are to have it, let's put aside the negatives and get on with making a success of the project. There are, potentially, many travel improvements in the scheme for the majority living in the St Ives area.

While funding is awaited, we can use the time to raise the debate about those matters which directly affect St Ives, which the Lib Dems believe need more consideration.

These points are particularly relevant as the St Ives Transport Strategy comes up for public consultation in the near future. The effect of this strategy may well please or dismay you, dependent on your circumstances and viewpoint, so don't miss the opportunity to see what is being planned.

This strategy has many good points, with safety issues being addressed as well as proposing cycleways and pedestrian routes within the town.

But we have doubts that it will improve traffic flows through the town. The recent Low Road closure has really rubbed in how much congestion needs to be reduced.

Allowing the guided bus priority through the centre of the town and to cross Harrison Way could cause even more congestion to roads already suffering at peak times.

It also raises concerns about safety with the planned route through Crown Street and Market Hill as well as issues on market days, when it appears to be competing with traders' stalls for space.

It will be our intention to raise with district and county councils our concern that these issues are examined and properly quantified.

And the residents of St Ives and surrounding villages should be kept fully informed of the likely effect of the changes being tabled before final detailed decisions are taken.

BRIAN WALLIS, Chairman, St Ives Lib Dems, Burlington Way, Hemingford Grey

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